Biden's New Communications Director: The Washington Post's Shailagh Murray

By Garance Franke-Ruta

Vice President Biden has tapped a second journalist to be his communications director, announcing that Shailagh Murray of The Washington Post would lay aside her notepad to join the Obama White House.

Murray will succeed former Time Washington bureau chief Jay Carney, who left journalism for Biden's shop before being becoming White House press secretary upon Robert Gibb's departure in mid-February.

Murray covered the Obama presidential campaign for The Washington Post from its earliest days and later led coverage of the health-care overhaul fight after returning to Congressional coverage. Her last byline covering the administration she will soon join appeared on March 2.

"Shailagh's years of experience covering a broad array of issues ranging from domestic policy to foreign affairs make her uniquely positioned to lead our communications team," Biden said in a statement announcing the move, which was first reported by Murray's colleague Chris Cillizza at The Post (both Murray and Cillizza are former colleagues of mine).

"She is as well-respected among her peers as she is versed in the serious issues facing our nation and the world. Her leadership and counsel will be invaluable to me, and to the entire administration," Biden said.

In November, Murray took on a new role at The Post reporting on "the political dynamic between the White House and Congress," according to a Post memo published on FishbowlDC. "She will pay special attention to the relationship between Democrats and the president as their party regroups for 2012."

Murray's move will make her "one of more than a dozen people formerly employed by national news outlets working for the administration," The Post's Ed O'Keefe noted Friday. She will be the fourth from The Post, according to O'Keefe's list.

Murray joined The Post in 2005 after working at The Wall Street Journal from 1992 to 2005.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/03/bidens-new-communications-director-the-washington-posts-shailagh-murray/72691/